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Chelsea

 By Phil Lythell

With crowded schedule ahead, Chelsea's fringe players must step up

Chelsea head coach Jose Mourinho says the professional attitude of his players has been a highlight for him this season.

With Premier League fixtures now coming thick and fast in the always congested month of December, the need to rotate players becomes essential for Chelsea.

Although stable and consistent team selection usually forms the bedrock for success, the physical demands of English football and the truncated rest periods between matches mean that it is not just serial lineup tweakers such Claudio Ranieri and Rafael Benitez that see the virtues of tinkering with the team.

Although having had his hand forced...

 By Kevin Palmer

Eden Hazard close to becoming Chelsea's highest-paid player

Chelsea head coach Jose Mourinho says the professional attitude of his players has been a highlight for him this season.

Chelsea midfielder Eden Hazard is close to signing a new five-year contract with the Stamford Bridge club, sources have told ESPN.

The new deal for Hazard has been in place for the last few months, but negotiations have been stepped up in recent days and the Belgian is now close to committing his long-term future to Chelsea.

Hazard's fresh contract will end persistent rumours linking the 23-year-old playmaker with a move to French champions Paris Saint-Germain, with Blues manager Jose Mourinho...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Chelsea's Abramovich, Arsenal's Usmanov lose millions in 48 hours

Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich has reportedly lost $449.5 million in 48 hours.

Roman Abramovich, Alisher Usmanov and Dmitry Rybolovlev -- involved with Chelsea, Arsenal and Monaco respectively -- all lost 100s of millions of dollars in a matter of days this week as a result of Russia's current economic troubles.

The Russian ruble has fallen to its lowest value in more than a decade due to, among other factors, trade sanctions imposed on the country by the international community and Saudi Arabia's continued production of cheap oil, which is damaging Russia's own prosperity...

 By PA Sport

Chelsea's form means nothing unless trophies are won, insists Petr Cech

The ESPN FC crew analyse Liverpool's Capital One Cup performance against Bournemouth and look ahead to their semifinal against Chelsea.

Petr Cech has dismissed comparisons with Chelsea's historic 2005 title winners -- despite the class of 2014 being on course for the quadruple.

The goalkeeper insisted they must win trophies to prove their worth under Jose Mourinho.

Boss Mourinho guided Chelsea to their first title in 50 years in his first spell nine years ago and the leaders are tipped to take the Barclays Premier League crown again this season.

But Cech -- who has been linked with a move to Liverpool after losing the number one...

ESPN FC  By ESPN staff

Andre Villas-Boas: Returning to England is not in my plans

Andre Villas-Boas hinted that Tottenham director of football Franco Baldini is set to leave the club in the near future. 

Zenit St Petersburg boss Andre Villas-Boas has revealed that Liverpool approached him before he took over as Tottenham head coach in 2012, but says he has no plans to return to the Premier League.

Exactly one year since the end of his 18-month tenure at Spurs, the former Chelsea manager -- who lasted only nine months at Stamford Bridge...